The brilliance of Mbappe and Messi in the FIFA WC

Lionel Messi

For almost 15 years, Lionel Messi has been dominating world football, winning numerous trophies (4 UCL, 10 La Liga titles, the Copa del Rey seven times, the Spanish Super Cup eight times, three UEFA Super Cups, and three Club World Cups). Since moving to Paris Saint-Germain, Messi has won one Ligue 1 title and a Trophee des Champions. For his country, he has won the Copa America, the CONMEBOL - UEFA Cup of Champions, and most recently, the World Cup, to his trophy cabinet.

Kylian Mbappe

The French prodigy burst onto the scene; after his transfer from Monaco to PSG, he was crowned French champions five times, was awarded the top goal scorer nine times, was named player of the season four times, player of the year once, won the French Cup three times, the French League twice, the French Youth Cup once, the European Under-19 Championship once, the French Super Cup three times, and four years ago he was the youngest player (19) to win the World Cup

Argentina vs France

Both came to the World Cup in Qatar with different goals in mind. Lionel Messi wanted to win the World Cup before he retired, as he saw the Golden Trophy slip past him four times. While Mbappe arrived in Russia hoping to win two World Cups before the age of 24,

Messi started the campaign by scoring in every game except against Poland. Messi had a blip in his first game, where, despite his scoring against Saudi Arabia, they lost. Since that match, he took the game by the scruff of its neck and continued winning till the finals, where he scored five goals.

Mbappe arrived at the World Cup scoring along the way, including a masterclass against Poland, which he defeated with a brace. Mbappe appeared to have picked up where he left off in his previous World Cup appearance. Following France's victory over Morocco, he faced Argentina, who was tied at five goals.

The South American team took the lead early on thanks to a Lionel Messi penalty, and Angel Di Maria later doubled the lead for La Albisceliste. The game looked like it would end in Argentina's favor when Kylian Mbappe scored two quick goals to show why he was rated so highly. He scored two goals within one minute. 

He took the match to extra time. Lionel Messi seems to have given Argentina, and in the process, he became the top scorer of the tournament with seven goals. But Kylian Mbappe, like a true leader, scored in the end by converting a spot kick and scoring a hat trick, becoming the second player to score three goals. In the penalty shootouts, both scored, but Mbappe was let down by his teammates, who missed their chances. But for La Albiceleste, the players converted 4-1 winners, and Messi finally won the coveted trophy.

Records Broken By Messi

  • Messi became the all-time record holder for most games played in the World Cup. By making his 26th appearance in the tournament, he surpassed Lothar Matthaus, who had 25 appearances.
  • Messi became the only player in the history of football to score goals in every round of a single tournament. Messi scored in the group stage, the round of 16, the quarterfinals, the semifinals, and the final.
  • Messi became the joint record holder for winning the most World Cup matches, along with Miroslav Klose.
  • Messi broke Italy legend Paolo Maldini's record of 2,217 minutes. Messi, who had played 2,194 minutes in the World Cup before the final, became the player to play for the most minutes as soon as he spent 23 minutes on the field.
  • Messi became the first player in history to receive two golden balls.
  • He made the most progressive passes for Argentina (49).
  • Most Key Passes (21)
  • Most shots on target (13)
  • The most goals and assists (10)
  • Had the highest xG of 6.6.
  • the highest number of through balls and penalties (4)
  • had the most assists (3).
  • 5th player to win UCL, World Cup, and Balon D'Or (Messi, Kaka, Zidane, Rivaldo, Ronaldinho).

Records broken by Mbappe include

  • The second player to score a hat-trick in a final The only previous player to do so was England’s Geoff Hurst in 1966.
  • youngest player to score a treble in the showpiece event.
  • the second teenager to score a goal in the World Cup final, replicating the achievement of Pele in 1958. Indeed, Mbappe boasts exactly the same World Cup finals scoring record as the Brazilian great, with 12 goals in 16 games.
  • the third teenager to win the FIFA Young Player Award, following in the footsteps of Pele (17) and Michael Owen (18), who were both younger than him when they won it.
  • He is the youngest player to score 10 World Cup goals. Indeed, with 12 strikes to his credit, he is joint-sixth on the all-time scoring charts at the World Cup finals and stands a strong chance of beating Miroslav Klose of Germany.
  • scored eight goals, which won him the golden boot; this feat was done by Ronaldo for Brazil in 2002. Gerd Muller held the record for 10 goals in 1970 for Germany.

The World Cup was like a passing of the baton from Messi to Mbappe, and in 2026 Mbappe will be at the peak of his talents. Mbappe will be 27 years old. Expect him to break more records then.

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